February 2205

Procyon's family campaign

Moderator: procyon

Re: February 2205

Postby procyon on Sun 18 Mar 2012 18:10

February 2205 part 30

Overview
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Whew...wondered if we would ever reach this point.

This month was a tough one. A lot happened on all sides of the fence. I suppose we will start with the tale of the tape as it were. As a note before we start, this month saw all but the Chinese becoming team players, trying to preserve any income/combat power they had to survive what they were sure by now was coming. This was the first month the players spent more time together sharing info, stategies, and whatever else was needed to try and keep things from falling apart.

In March they were going to need that...




For the Pan Euro

This month played havoc with the Pan Euro's plans. She ended the month with a GEV of 1666.9 MCs and 562.7 MC in the Treasury, but the loss of Victoria Colony wiped out the previous 9 months of colonization and would set her back some. The plan to begin building the game's first drive field ship was put on an indefinite hold. And her hopes to begin rebuilding her fleet so that she would have a fair number of ships to refit to the new launchers when they came on line wasn't looking so good. She took a hit in the combat this month, but not as bad as it could have been. She managed to preserve two Battle Groups worth of ships, but one of them was pretty badly beaten up.
All told she lost 20PU - of which the last few were conquered, one Heavy Escort, three Attack Escorts, and got one Attack Escort and a Destroyer damaged. She also put a Heavy Escort into service before she had completed construction on it.
The worst news was the loss of the colony. In this game we treated each individual 20PU in the AB as a separate colony, not as one large population. It's loss meant the Nemotians would have a chance to find the location of ALL the AB colonies. Preventing their destruction/conquest would be impossible.With the Euro still having 94.3PU in the belt, that loss would hurt.
The good news for the month concerned the damaged ships - neither had lost over 1/2 the internal systems so they didn't lose grade. She got the Elise back to the US shipyard at Mars for the bonus on the Emergency repairs and got all of its systems back online. It and the Kathleen both made the rolls to advance in grade as a bonus. This was one of the reasons she didn't want to make full repairs - she didn't want to go from Heroic with the Elise back down to Poor for the coming month, and the same for the Queen Jane Grey. The Cinderella story was the Queen Jane Grey. Remember me mentioning that she had made it out of the yards early and was Green this month. Just short of half the missiles she got on target would have missed had she been Poor. And then when she made her rolls for Emergency Repairs out by Saturn she made it on all three systems - two of them on the exact number she needed as a Green crew. If she had been Poor the Nemotian Combat Ships (Destroyers) wouldn't have come out of the fight with nearly as much damage and she would likely have been in much worse shape. Then she made her roll for both the ship to go up to Average grade, and the roll for Rear Admiral McNeely to go up to LG+1 (Veteran for us). Stephan Vasilikos also advanced to LG+1 giving 3rd BG some depth in its leadership. Luck saved the day for the Euro this month. But luck doesn't hold out forever.


For the US

The US skirted by without losing any of its colonies, which made the oldest boy happy as he was already behind on income. He ended the month with a GEV of 1336.9 MCs and 896.7 MCs in his treasury and of all the players he would be the only one not to go 'backwards' on this coming into March.
He had tried very hard to keep any of the colonies from falling. Very hard. Of all the players he had pushed the most of his ready Qv into combat trying to keep the colonies in the fight. He had fought on Chinese and Euro 'soil', and was ready to put some on Hektor(FSC) until it became obvious that the roll for combat would be impossible to make. Nuking enough of the enemy to shift the balance would wipe out the population. And when it came down to that, he committed his Q Ships to trying to rescue the oldest girl's PTU so she wouldn't fall even farther behind in the power curve.
He took the biggest hit for his efforts though. He only had a few combat units, and lost a lot of his combat power. He lost two of his three Interceptors Mk III - one to combat and the other when it couldn't get its Qa back on line. But they died finding out something the players desparately needed to know - that the aliens now had Da and had beefed up their shields. Without that information the players may have committed to a combat they couldn't win in much worse circumstances. The destruction of the Kama and Yari likely saved the players.
The loss of the two Q Ships also took out much of his combat power. They might not have been the most powerful of combat ships, but they were what kept many of the operations going. Their ability to both move supplies (H), troops or colonist (Qv), and support ground landings (Ra and Bsa) made them linch pins in many ways.
The US had been reduced to one Mk III, three Mk IIb's, a pair of Q Ships, a pair of BS0's, and the 6 Defense Modules of the SS at Mars. He was sure the next blow of the hammer would land there, and he was moving as quickly as he could to 'circle the wagons.' The fact that the Pan Euro was moving both of its Battle Groups there showed that she agreed.
He also was going to be finished with the repairs on the SY on the space station at Earth in March. I am sure the plan for April was to use ground construction to throw six military modules around it in one month. With his three SYs and one major off world colony in the balance, I am sure a bunch of nail biting was underway.


For China

The Chinese, for the most part, still tried to make their own way. They ended the month with a GEV of 1739.1 MCs and a treasury of 1672.0 MCs. The loss of Titan was going to hurt, but the lack of any AB colonies made the fall of Victoria less painful. The only target left for the aliens that he had was Earth, and it would be a tough nut to crack. What irritated him the most was that he only had 8 IU left he could place on Earth before he hit his limit again. Then his growth would come to a stop - again allowing the other players to catch up. Compared to the other players, he had it easy.
Combat was hard on him, as were the ramdom events. His string of good luck came to a crashing end in February. I rolled for 'Bad Software'. I looked at the sheet for his FGs, and rolled a random system from the list. It turned up as shields. So, any time he used the shields, he had a 1 in 10 chance of the system crashing for d10/3 rounds (FRU). That hurt. With four shields on the FGs this meant he was rolling 4 dice a turn when he put his shields up. And his luck was less than stellar.
Next was his decision that this wasn't a random event, but sabotage from the FSC (who were up to something, but not this). So it happened that he pulled most of the combat troops from Titan early and landed on Hektor. I really couldn't have asked him to help out more from the Nemotian's point of view. He weakened two targets at once (Titan by pulling troops, Hektor by lowering the PU with prepratory strikes). When he realized what was going on in the month, he back-pedaled on this and threw in his lot with his sister to prevent the aliens from gaining more ground - but it was too late. He also resisted having the US land on Titan for fear they found his one remaining Construction Ship, but in the end relented as his Troop Transports dwindled.
He lost three of his seven Missile Frigates (two to alien fire, one lost both Qa and couldn't get them fixed), which hurt. But they were his newest and lowest grade ships, and he had another that would be completed in late March. He also lost two of his three Troop Transports which was worse in a way. I will explain.
He REALLY didn't want to give up on Titan. It was not only his sole off world colonization asset, it was an mT. And even though the Nemotians had cleansed the last of the PU off the moon, they had left behind the Qv and the PDC. A PDC that at the end of the month now mounted an Ra. It finally had some teeth. He wanted to get the Zhuang back on the surface, more troops down to protect the ship and the PDC, and colonists back so that he could hold it long term. He had the cash to do it and perhaps enough ships to force the issue. What he lacked was the carry capacity.
He also lacked one other thing. He had one good admiral to command his fleet. He also had one good general to command his Qv on Earth. He just didn't have any other graded leaders to spare.
But he knew a player who had both that were just sitting idle....


For the FSC

These were hard months for the FSC. She ended the month with a GEV of 335.5 MCs with a treasury of 6.3 MCs. And with the loss of Hektor she was going to lose ground. With a colonization rate of about 0.6 PTU a month into the belt, it was going to take a long time to replace the 13 PTU she had on Hektor. So next month she would be losing about 4% of her income. Not good when you are already in the back of the pack.
To make it worse, as you all well know, she lost her only two combat ships in the attempt to rescue the colonists from her colony. She was also months away from fielding her next warship. What she did have left was a couple of FTs, and after some tutoring from her brother - the Dutchman. But that is a story unto itself....
Now, what had prompted the issue that caused China to believe that the FSC was again trying to perform espionage on him was that - she was. But she wasn't responsible for his problem with the shields. She had activated one of her teams to try to find out the EXACT composition of his armed forces. She wanted to know what he was doing on Titan, and what was under construction at Venus, and if his fleet was actually there or off elsewhere. She was sure if his fleet had disappeared - it was for a reason.
But her roll wasn't so good. Her attempt failed, and the target would know that she had attempted something - but not what. So transpired the issues that occured between them. Oh what tangled webs...
For a player with no combat ships, and no off world colonies left, the oldest girl would see a lot of action the next month.


For the Nemotians

For this month, the Nemotians ended it with a GEV of 1363.3 MCs, and 696.7 MCs in their treasury. This only beat the US by the slimmest of margins. It was way behind the Euro and China. With 601.5 MC in warship maintenance and 224.9 in maintenance on the defenses (BS and PDC), the Nemotians were burning up 60% of their income in maintenance. EL research was still at 5 RP a month, but it was going to have to get cut to keep the offensive going. I was already looking at just one RP for the coming month. The first roll for an EL advance was 90 RP away - and I was fairly sure that even at 5 RP per month - the Nemotians were not going to be able to hold out long enough to get to the next EL (another 18 months or more...). With nearly 200 MC going into EL research, that cash could be vital somewhere else. I was still pushing MCs into research, as there were still two more projects I would like to get complete before it all came crashing down.
This month also finished up the SY under construction at New Home 5 (which I did write up a little in my first drafts, but ended up cutting so that I could get posts typed up in my free time at work). This would give the Nemotians three SYs to build from. That would be a help, but not for this offensive.
The month had went fairly well in most respects, except for the final battle. Facing down the Chinese FGs plus the (understrength) Euro 3rd BG at Saturn was probably a mistake. I really needed to get rid of the larger enemy ships before they could group together, so I couldn't just turn away. But taking the two Nemotians DDs in with Poor Crews hurt them badly. One lost its armor and hold, while the other lost two of its three Cp, both Qa, the H, the Mg, and the Da. With a Poor crew I was really crossing my fingers that one of the Q would come back online. I did roll and get one Q back, along with the H and one Cp (fairly lucky really). But with the Da down, it was badly crippled for combat. It would also be stuck at Poor for March also. The other DD made its roll to advance in grade and would end up as Average for March, but the Assault Vessel (CL) failed its roll and stayed at Average. The Commander of Fleets made his roll though, and the Nemotians would have an Elite admiral for the next month.
I knew I still had two big hurdles for the next month. One would be the continued ground combat. Resupplying the new troops on Triton wouldn't be difficult I felt, but getting them to Victoria and keeping the players from nuking it clean would be a problem. There were also other landings I had planned, but we won't go in to that now (no sense giving out to many spoilers...). The other big hurdle would be crippling up the players enough that the Nemotians could recover from this offensive and gain back some ground. On month 30 I would get more growth, and in the mean time could build up the defenses. To buy that time I would need to destroy a majority of the players ships and find a way to hurt them economically. You will just have to wait for March to see how that went.
The Nemotians Combat Group still had one CL, two DDs (one badly damaged), four CTs, four armed FT4s, an ES, and several support vessels. Somewhat heavier than the US, about equal to the Euro, still behind the Chinese, and considerably weaker then the defenses at Earth. But the US and Euro had circled the wagons. Any fleet I faced would now have the upper hand. The battle from here on out would all be uphill.



Ok - this next part will be new so bear with me. I will now try to go back over a lot of the events from the story and describe them from the game point of view.

January had ended with the bombing of Victoria and Hektor. My wife (Pan Euro) responded by transferring the bulk of the 3rd LBG to protect it if they could, while leaving the Red October to watch at Hektor. She was sure it would be sporadic bombing and she just wanted to know what was going on and make sure the aliens didn't accomplish much.

That illusion was shattered when I began the landings on Victoria. My wife was shocked and a little ticked off. This was going to take time and money. She saw it as a delaying action to tie down her fleet while I tried to rebuild. It wasn't until the population started dwindling that she realized she might LOSE. And then she realized that the same thing might happen to her as happened to the Nemotians. THEY would know where her populations were. She didn't like that. When I pointed out that it just wouldn't be her populations at risk but ALL of them, she began to sweat. So did the other players.

It was at this point that the oldest boy sprang into action. He felt (I think) that Mars was fairly secure. Mars was close to Victoria and he immediately pulled the troops off of it and shipped them to the Pan Euro. My wife was slower to respond. She knew she had time, and I think she still believed that this was going to end up with me nuking the colony and I just wanted her to spend MCs on troops that I would be able to destroy without any risk to myself. If the oldest boy wanted to spend MCs on the battle, that was fine. She just wasn't in a hurry to do it.

The Chinese also started the month knowing the fact that the FSC had attempted something within their borders. China wasn't sure what, or if it had succeeded. He was ticked. This time he had his excuse and was ready. It was earlier than he wanted, but he began landings on Hektor. I am sure he thought that his ships would easily be able to hold off a few alien bombers. And then when he attacked and his shields began to fail, he really got ticked. He was sure this wasn't just the FSC. 'She doesn't have the ships to take me on.' But all of them together could. So he was fairly sure that all the players were in on it and he was in trouble.

I am fairly sure he had decided that with the aliens apparently on the ropes, he had just become the next target. So he came back with a vengenance and hammered in his landing on Hektor. He knew that he had the spare MCs (it would take 500) to fix the problem in a month. He just had to survive that long.

This really threw the situation on Triton into turmoil. It was 'officially' an FSC holding. She was getting the tribute and her general was running the show. She didn't have the most troops, but she did have more than the Chinese. She didn't know if he had more on the way though. But my wife (Euro) stepped in an said SHE had the most troops, and if fighting broke out SHE would take the moon. The oldest girl didn't want to push her - as she was still getting the tribute if she just did nothing. The middle boy knew he didn't have troops going that way - and didn't want his mom, who was his nearest rival in income and power, to get another holding and even more MCs per month. So the situation became a tense standoff with the Pan Euro acting as a peace keeping force. The oldest boy offered to throw troops out there also in case the Chinese had some on the way. Everyone ok'ed it as it would also help if the aliens landed troops there also.

And then what none of the players wanted to happen, happened. I had the Nemotians drop more troops on Hektor. The players had still only seen quickly converted FTs and little ships supporting them so they still weren't quaking in their boots. But they were beginning to worry that if I won any of these battles I would be able to come up with a BUNCH of targets to bombard in the belt.

Then Titan got hit with landings also. At this point even the middle boy came out of his seclusion and got involved with some of the discussions. He agreed to a cease fire on Hektor. They would resolve this problem first. He even agreed to commit his warships to resecurring the space around Hektor. I think he was willing to work to try and build good will - as he still thought the other players knew he had no shields and were just waiting to take him out. If his ship and troops could be pivotal in helping the other players they might not be so willing to attack. I am fairly sure he was trying to buy time.

He also agreed at this time to letting the US assist his colony on Titan. With his Qv nearly wiped out in the landing (he had like 0.7 or some such left), no warships close by, and still worried that if he sent ships the other players would hit him while he was split up - he let his older brother help. I am sure he figured that the oldest boy posed the least threat 'fleet-wise', and had troops nearby. His MkIII's could reach Saturn very quickly and might just be able to take out the pesky alien troopships. I am sure it looked like a good plan.

This bit of agreement caught me off guard. The MkIII's with Admiral Ryan as a Navigator in command could get from Earth to Saturn if they pushed it way faster than I had anticipated. I had orders for the ships to stay on station after the landing for 24 hours. He was able to beat that time frame. With the Red October in tow, I had a nasty choice. I could let them destroy my ships and not reveal the new systems. Or I could fight and hope they would think that all I had done so far was refit a few FTs and was still trying to rebuild/refit a real fleet. I might not have another good chance to take out the fastest ships again - so I fought. And so the players learned that the new ships were tougher than they had anticipated. The oldest boy lost one ship in the fighting, and another afterward when he couldn't get the Q fixed. The last MkIII and the Red October were left with just a few missiles. Of course, so was Patrol Vessel 24. I was disappointed that the Red October got close enough to get data on the Da also. That could hurt in the long run.

I think they just all wanted to believe that one fleet was all I had up my sleeve and the threat was now over or severely lessened.

I bidded my time. The longer I waited and nothing happened, then more the players would believe nothing else was out there. Landing Pan Euro troops on Victoria and the US troops on Titan probably made them feel more secure, and wouldn't change much in the long run. They shifted ships around to try and better protect the populations and combat zones. I made some token bombing runs to try and keep them thinking that there wasn't much left to pester them and run them down on missiles. But they didn't try to consolidate their holdings. They still weren't looking for a big attack.

The players began shifting more troops out to the colonies that were under attack. They were maiking sure that I wouldn't be able to win with what I had on the ground as it were. And then one of the groups, the Chinese transports, ended up crossing paths with one of the Nemotian Strike Groups, but they were destroyed before they could get a message off. In that the FTs couldn't detect the attacking ships, I rolled the first attack without involving the middle boy. When the ships were destroyed and the roll indicated that they hadn't gotten a message off, I just informed him that regular transmissions from them had stopped. He had no idea just what had done it. I hoped he assumed it was the missing Patrol Vessel.

I was sure that wouldn't hold the players for long though. Someone, likely the Euro, would come looking and begin to patrol the area. So I decided to up the ante, and put in another troop landing for the Nemotians on Hektor. The situation there was the most complicated for the players and would take the most time for them to adjust to. During this the middle boy did the math and realized that he wouldn't likely resolve the combat on Titan with the current forces he had. But if he just nuked a few of the alien Qv, he could wrap it up quickly. The fact that he would lose a few PU didn't both him much. With the current rate he was colonizing, he would be able to make up the losses in a few months. He just needed to secure the moon and the space around it. With this solution firmly in hand, he ordered the rest of the players away from Titan.

That spurred the other players to look at the situation on the other moons. At that point in time, Victoria was nearly a sure win for the players and my wife was willing to soak the battle stringing out another month. But they realized Hektor was almost certainly a lost cause. The oldest boy had troops on the way (on a Euro ship), but it wouldn't be enough. So he offered to pull the colonists off, then they could nuke the alien Qv and resettle the colonists afterward. It would have been a good plan.

But the Nemotian Strike Group was still loitering nearby. And I still needed to hit as many of the players ships while they were scattered as I could. As soon as the US and FSC ships landed and began the evacuation, I had the troops broadcast that fact. The Strike Group was ordered forward to take out the relief group. That would make it obvious that this wasn't a raid though. So I ordered the second Strike Group to hit Victoria. The ruse of a raid would be over. The battle for the inner system would be on.

The FSC set the Mary Reed down on Hektor to load, but the US tried to do it with shuttles at first. When two were shot down on the first pass he decided there were just to many alien Qv (16 at that time) to try it with GTOS. It would go eight times slower with the ships landed, but losing the landers wasn't going to speed it up. And he had to pay to replace landers. Then the Nemotians showed up. Two of the Q Ships had loaded and moved off, but two were still landed along with the Mary Reed (which was slightly behind as she hadn't gotten a shuttle load on at first to start things off. When it became obvious it wasn't going to be a few armed FTs, the middle boy stepped in for a second to 'consult' with the oldest girl. He had troops on the ground that could monitor some transmissions so he was allowed to attend parts of the battle. He told her not to lift off (???). At first I thought he was going to tell her to hide and hope the ships would get pushed back, but then she started firing. So I toasted the Mary Reed along with the Q Ships that tried to lift off. Her declaring for ramming with the Krait caught me off guard and forced me to turn away from the colony - and saved the other Q Ships by keeping them out of sensor range. It died shortly thereafter. The Red October made a target of itself and then ran away before it took any lasting damage. I figured I had scored a fair victory, if less than stellar. One admiral and four armed FTs. Then the kids let me know that I likely hadn't killed the admiral.

They showed me the rules that landed ships are counted as PDC, and she had written an order at the start of the battle that the Dutchman was now going to be acting as a general. Ooooh Kay.... So what. Then they showed me the rules that a leader on a planet when it fell to invaders would escape 80% of the time. We had house ruled you weren't going to be escaping in life pods on the ships in space - but hadn't ever addressed getting nuked on a planet. The oldest girl made her roll and the Dutchman survived. The middle boy still had his Troop Transport about a day out and sent a gig to pick up the stranded admiral. So began an unlikely alliance.

The battle at Victoria went badly for the Euro. She lost the Hy Escort and two of the four Attack Escorts. One of the two that managed to escape was badly damaged. But she did pick on one of the Patrol Vessels that had good to hit rolls and managed to finally bring down PV 17. Its charmed life had come to an end. But a second landing of troops on Victoria cinched that it would fall, and now the players were in no position to contest that. The Nemotians would conquer a population and get any data that came with it. It would just take time. With the Nemotian's hand out for all to see, I saw no reason to delay the next troop landing that would occur at Triton. I had every intention of taking back what I had lost if I could.

I expected the Chinese and Pan Euro to pull back from Titan, and was surprised when the battle occured. I already wrote about it in some detail above in the tale of the tape so I won't recover that. The Nemotians did clean all the PU off the moon, but ran out of bombs (and were too low on torpedoes to risk using them up) before they could destroy the PDC and troops. So I left them. They weren't a threat and would continue to siphon off player funds and ships if I left them. So I did.

That pretty much finished up February. The players had lost several colonies and stood to lose more if I got data on where they were at. They had circled the wagons, leaving Venus, Mars, and Earth bristling with missile launchers. The Euro was slightly dinged up, and the US was short on ships. But the core of the Chinese fleet was intact and supported by the SS at Venus. And the US and Euro together at Mars would be a tough nut to crack.

That left one target with no mobile elements and the bulk of the players' economic power just a little bit open, and in the end it was the only target that would actually make any real difference....

The next part will cover the ship designs and battles for the month.
...and I will show you fear in a handful of dust....

Cralis wrote:I would point out that the "what was" which is different from "here and now" can easily change in the "future then."
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procyon
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Re: February 2205

Postby procyon on Wed 04 Apr 2012 11:58

February 2205 part 31

Overview - cont.
//////////////////////////////////////////

Ok, on to typing up the battles for the month. For those who wanted to see the new Nemotian designs, here they are....

Oh, and I will not be listing every attack by smcft in the month. They were important if you were to play it through and try to track how many missiles a ship has as the month progresses, but it will eat up a bunch of space and time. So I will just skip them and show what the vessels had for ordinance in a given battle.

I will also not post unopposed landings, such as the first one on Victoria. It wasn't so much a battle as a single roll by the population against the bombers followed by a landing. Not a great deal of table top value.


I will post several of the battles that 'never happened', just in case someone would like to see how it turns out...

So without further ado, on to the battles.


Declaration of War / FSC vs China / Hektor Colony


FSC Forces
Admiral: Dutchman (LG+2/Courageous) - on Mary Reed
Hektor Colony at center of map (13.0 PU)

Converted Freighter Mary Reed (BG+1) FT2 / 16HS
[2] S S S S Qv Qv Qv H H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
RbM x 10

Armed Freighter Krait (BG) FT1 / 12HS
[2] S S H Qv H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 10


Chinese Forces
Missile Frigate Angtung (BG-2) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S Qa Hs Qa (Cp) Ra Mgs Ra Ra Ya (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 54

Setup
Mary Reed and Krait at 2tH from Hektor
Angtung at 20tH from Hektor with S down.
Chinese gig to approach colony to scout area for warships before any engagement.
Chinese ship much spend one round making announcement of war prior to any launch, other than self defense.
Map is AB terrain. Hektor is considered as a moon for terrain purposes.

Special rules.
The Chinese ship will have to roll a single d10 for each shield active in a turn. On a roll of 10, the shield will go down. It may be restored after d10/3 (FRU) turns.

Comments.
This battle never happened, but could have been very close. This is where the Chinese became aware that their shields were compromised - and decided to retire from the field. I could have had the problems with the shields occur earlier in the month on the space station at Venus, but thought this would be a more 'dramatic' moment. (My family hates me at moments like this...)


Assault of Hektor / FSC vs China / Hektor Colony


FSC Forces
Admiral: Dutchman (LG+2/Courageous) - on Mary Reed
Hektor Colony at center of map (13.0 PU)

Converted Freighter Mary Reed (BG+1) FT2 / 16HS
[2] S S S S Qv Qv Qv H H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
RbM x 10

Armed Freighter Krait (BG) FT1 / 12HS
[2] S S H Qv H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 10


Chinese Forces
Missile Frigates Angtung (BG-2) , Sichuan (BG-2) , Quinha (BG-1) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S Qa Hs Qa (Cp) Ra Mgs Ra Ra Ya (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 54

Setup
Mary Reed and Krait at 2tH from Hektor
Chinese FGs at 20tH from Hektor with S up.
Map is AB terrain. Hektor is considered as a moon for terrain purposes.

Special rules.
The Chinese ships will have to roll a single d10 for each shield active in a turn. On a roll of 10, the shield will go down. It may be restored after d10/3 (FRU) turns.

Comments.
Again, this battle never happened. The oldest girl decided that it was unwinnable. It was. In both this and the preceeding scenarios, the Chinese have a pair of unarmed transports about 1/3rd LM from the colony awaiting clearance for landings.


Nemotian Assault on Hektor / China vs Nemotians / Hektor Colony

FSC Forces
Hektor Colony at center of map (12.8 PU)


Chinese Forces
Missile Frigate Angtung (BG-2) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S Qa Hs Qa (Cp) Ra Mgs Ra Ra Ya (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 54

Qv x 12 on Hektor


Nemotian Forces

Patrol Vessel 13 (BG+2) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S S Hs Qa Da Ya (cpCp) Pta [6/1] / cg x1 (with 2 bombs)
PtaM x 10

Armed Colony Vessel 3 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1 (with 2 bombs)
Qv x 8 on board

Attack Vessel 3 (BG) ES / 12HS
[2] S S H Ya Qa (Cp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 10

Light Support Vessel 14 (BG) FT1/12HS
[2] A H H H H A H H H H Qa (Cp) [6/1]
H x 4 for troops, bombs x16 in hold with maint, cg x 2 in holds

Setup
Chinese FGs at 2tH from Hektor with S down.
Nemotian ships at 30tH from Hektor, S down.
Map is AB terrain. Hektor is considered as a moon for terrain purposes.
Nemotians must attempt bombing of Hektor prior to any attack.


Special rules.
The Chinese ship will have to roll a single d10 for each shield active in a turn. On a roll of 10, the shield will go down. It may be restored after d10/3 (FRU) turns.

Comments.
This was the first battle to happen, sort of. The middle boy first wanted to shoot down the bombers, then decided that it was unwinnable when he met the rest of the group. It was less a battle and more an attempt to disengage successfully. The slower speed of the Armed Transport, and my prior SOP for this that the landing and protection of the transport was more important than engaging enemy vessels allowed him to get his FG away.

This battle was also a nail biter for me, leading up to it at least. My SOP had the landing as the highest priority if possible, and stated new systems (Da and EM) were not to be used - otherwise the landing was to be aborted. I wasn't interested in taking out the defense, just in giving the appearance of raiders and drawing in more ships. After China's landing, the middle boy decided the priority was guarding the construction at Venus and moved two of his FGs back there. If the middle boy had left all three of his FGs at Hektor, I would likely have had to abort the landing. Possibly indefinitely. This month could have went much differently if the players only had a single colony in danger....


Battle for Saturn's Orbitals / US & Euro vs Nemotians / Saturn

Chinese Forces

Titan Colony (9.7 PU)

Mobile Construction Vessel Zhuang (BG) FT4 / 30HS
[2] H A H Qa (Cp) (SYM1 o o o) [2/1] cg x1
(hidden of surface facing near PDC)

Titan Ground Defense (BG-2) PDC/6+ HS
[0] A A A Qv H Qa (Ra*) [0]
RbM x 10


US Forces

Task Force 2
Admiral: R Adm J Ryan (LG+2/Navigator) on Yari

Interceptor MkIII Yari (BG+2) , Sai (BG+2) , Kama (BG+1) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S Hs Mgs Qa Ya (Cp) Ra Ra (Cp) [7/1] cg x1
RbM x 44


Pan Euro Forces
Admiral: Commodore S Vasilikos (LG+0)

Armed Science Vessel Red October (BG+1) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S A A H Qa Mgs Xp (cp Cp) Ra Ra Ya Qa (Cp) [7/1] cg x1
RbM x 44


Nemotian Forces

Patrol Vessel 24 (BG) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S S Hs Qa Da Ya (cpCp) Pta [6/1] / cg x1
PtaM x 10

Armed Colony Vessel 8 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1

Light Support Vessel 14 (BG) FT1/12HS
[2] A H H H H A H H H H Qa (Cp) [6/1]
bombs x16 in hold with maint , cg x2 in holds

Setup
Saturn in center of map - fills hex.
Rings extend to 3tH.
Tethis at 4tH
Dione at 6tH
Rhea at 7tH
Titan at !7tH for Saturn, radian 7.
Rings are treated as AB terrain.

Nem FT1 in rings of Saturn at 2 tH, radian 3, speed 0.
Other Nemotian ships at 2tH from Titan, speed 2.
US and Euro ships at 30tH from Saturn, radian 1, speed 7.

Special rules.
The Chinese PDC is still under construction from the Zhuang. The Ra uses the partially completed construction rules. We had ruled it was not usuable at this time as it would not be finished until the end of the month.

Comments.
This was the battle I had hoped to avoid - ships I could not evade. But I hadn't anticipated the players reactions and this battle happened. Technically you could say that with no admiral the ships shouldn't have violated SOP. But SOP stated to avoid engagements and that was not going to be possible. With the SOP out, I decided that it was time to let the cat out of the bag. The players would get a warning of what the Nemotians were now fielding.

This battle hurt everyone. I lost one of the Armed FTs and support ships, burned up a lot of PtaM I had hoped to use later, and gave away my new capabilities. The US lost one ship outright, and the other to the failure of its Qa to come back online. That was a big hit. The Euro didn't lose a ship, but the R. Oct was left with only a few missiles. Her teeth had been pulled for some time to come.


Ambush in the Belt / China vs Nemotians / AB

Chinese Forces

Chinese Troop Transports 2 , 3 FT2 / 16HS
[2] H H Qv Qv H H Qv Qv H H Qv Qv (Bsa) H Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1, gtos x1
Qv x 6 & H x 6 on each transport


Nemotian Forces

Patrol Vessel 13 (BG+2) , 2 (BG+1) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S S Hs Qa Da Ya (cpCp) Pta [6/1] / cg x1
PtaM x 10

Armed Colony Vessel 2 (BG) , 3 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
Qv x 8 on board ACV 2

Attack Vessel 3 (BG) ES / 12HS
[2] S S H Ya Qa (Cp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 10

Light Support Vessel 14 (BG), 15 (BG) FT1/12HS
[2] A H H H H A H H H H Qa (Cp) [6/1]
bombs x18 in hold with maint , cg x 1 in hold
H x 7 on LSV 15

Setup
Nemotian PV 24 at center of map.
Other Nem ships within 2 tH of PV 24.
All Nem ships S down with drives off.
Chinese FTs at 20tH on radian 7, heading toward center of map, speed 1.

Special rules.
Chinese FTs may not change course or speed until they detect inbound weapons or the alien ships.

Comments.
This isn't about winning. It is about hoping the Nemotians get bad rolls and you can get a message off. In the game, they didn't survive the first launch and the middle boy only was told that he had lost communication with them. If they had managed to discover the alien group, who knows what would have happened. In that this group couldn't be the one attacking Victoria, they would likely have suspected at least two groups this size (which was true) and reacted to the threat.


Second Nemotian Landing on Hektor / FSC vs Nemotians / Hektor

FSC Forces
Admiral: Dutchman (LG+2/Courageous) - on Mary Reed
Hektor Colony at center of map (12.8 PU)

Converted Freighter Mary Reed (BG+1) FT2 / 16HS
[2] S S S S Qv Qv Qv H H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
RbM x 10

Armed Freighter Krait (BG) FT1 / 12HS
[2] S S H Qv H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 10


Chinese Forces
Qv x 6 on surface of Hektor


Nemotian Forces

Armed Colony Vessel 2 (BG) , 3 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1]
Qv x 8 on board ACV 2

Attack Vessel 3 (BG) ES / 12HS
[2] S S H Ya Qa (Cp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 10

cg x 4 (with bomb x2)

Setup.
FSC ships at 2tH from Hektor, speed 2.
Nemotian ships at 30tH from Hektor, radian 4, speed 0, shields down.
Nemotian gigs will make attack run before Nem ships may attack.

Comments.
This was a gamble. The players may have guessed that I had more ships than I was letting on, but I needed to up the stakes to keep the players pushing to hold their colonies. The oldest girl left the colony and lets its sensors tell her what was coming. When she found out, she decided to wait for help. The players all had a lot riding on the ground battles at this point, so she was sure someone would come. She was also hoping that the Nem ships would leave shortly after the landing.


Evacuation of Hektor / US, Euro, & FSC vs Nemotians / Hektor

FSC Forces

Admiral: Dutchman (LG+2/Courageous) - on ground as General
Hektor Colony at center of map (0.3 PU)
Qv x 3 on Hektor surface

Converted Freighter Mary Reed (BG+1) FT2 / 16HS
[2] S S S S Qv Qv Qv H H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
RbM x 8

Armed Freighter Krait (BG) FT1 / 12HS
[2] S S H Qv H Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 8


Chinese Forces
Qv x 6 on surface of Hektor


US Forces

US Q Ship Steadfast (BG+1/BG-2 for repairs), Vigilance (BG+1), Defiant (BG-1), Resolute (BG-1) FT2 / 16HS
[2] S S Qv Qv Qv Ya Ra H H H (Bsa) Qa (Cp) [4/1] cg x1
RbM x 10

GTOS x2


Pan Euro Forces
Admiral: Commodore S Vasilikos (LG+0)

Armed Science Vessel Red October (BG+1) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S A A H Qa Mgs Xp (cp Cp) Ra Ra Ya Qa (Cp) [7/1] cg x1
RbM x 8


Nemotian Forces

Qv x16 on Hektor

Patrol Vessel 13 (BG+2) , 2 (BG+1) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S S Hs Qa Da Ya (cpCp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 10

Armed Colony Vessel 2 (BG) , 3 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1]

Attack Vessel 3 (BG) ES / 12HS
[2] S S H Ya Qa (Cp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 8

Light Support Vessel 14 (BG), 15 (BG) FT1/12HS
[2] A H H H H A H H H H Qa (Cp) [6/1]
bombs x12 in hold with maint


Setup.
Hektor at center of map.
Defiant, Resolute, and Mary Reed are landed on Hektor.
Krait at 2tH from Hektor, speed 2.
Steadfast, Vigilance, and Red October at 20tH from Hektor on radian 5, speed 1.
GTOS at 54tH from Hektor on radian 5, speed 1.
Nemotian PV at 20tH from Hektor on radian 1, speed 2.
Nemotian ships at 15tH from Hektor on radian 1, speed 4.

Special rules.
US GTOS and Q ships have colonists on board. Max speed of 1 with no accel or decel only - unless vent cargo.

Comments.
This one tipped the hand that this wasn't going to be a bit of raiding and pestering with ground combat. The players struggled mostly to keep me from getting in sensor range of the colonists on the Steadfast and Vigilance. The players lost quite a few ships. The Attack Vessel had its shields dropped, that was it.


Sack of Victoria / Euro vs Nemotians / Victoria Colony

Pan Euro Forces
Victoria Colony (15.6PU)
Qv x 10 on Victoria Colony

Heavy Escort Tatianna (BG+2) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S H Mgs Qa Ra Ra Ya (cpCp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 34

Attack Escort Scarlett (BG+1) , Kathleen (BG) , Elise (BG+2) , K Sereg (BG) ES / 12HS
[2] S S S A Hs Mgs Ya Ra Qa (Cp) [6/1]
RbM x 18


US Forces
Qv x 4 on Victoria Colony


Nemotian Forces
Qv x 8 on Victoria

Patrol Vessel 17 (BG+3) , 7 (BG+1) CT / 16HS
[2] S S S S Hs Qa Da Ya (cpCp) Pta [6/1]
PtaM x 10

Armed Colony Vessel 7 (BG) , 4 (BG-1) FT4 / 30HS
[2] S S S A H H Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Qv Da Kb+ (Cp) Qa (Cp) [4/1]
Qv x 8 on ACV 7

Light Support Vessel 19 (BG), 20 (BG) FT1/12HS
[2] A H H H H A H H H H Qa (Cp) [6/1]
bombs x12 in hold with maint

Setup.
Victorian Colony in center of map.
Pan Euro ships at 2tH from colony, speed 1.
Nemotian ships at 20tH from colony, radian 4, speed 4.

Comments.
This was a hard fought battle. My wife understood this was about getting one colony fairly intact, and destroying ships now. She knew that she had to give keeping the colony a try, but couldn't afford to lose her ships doing it. She got two ships away and finally cost my PV 17.
It cost her the Tatianna thought. We both lost dear ships on this one.


Sack of Titan / China & Euro vs Nemotians / Saturn

Chinese Forces
Titan Colony (4.7PU)
Mobile Construction Vessel Zhuang (BG) FT4 / 30HS
[2] H A H Qa (Cp) (SYM1 o o o) [2/1] cg x1
(hidden of surface facing near PDC)

Titan Ground Defense (BG-2) PDC/6+ HS
[0] A A A Qv H Qa (Ra*) [0]
RbM x 10

Chinese Forces
Missile Frigates Angtung (BG-2) , Sichuan (BG-2) , Quinha (BG-1) FG / 22HS
[2] S S S S Qa Hs Qa (Cp) Ra Mgs Ra Ra Ya (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 48


Pan Euro Forces
Rear Admiral R McNeely (BG)

Queen Jane Grey (BG-1) DD / 30HS
[2] S S S S A A A Hs Qa Mgs (Cp) (Cp) Qa Ra Ra Ya Ra Ra (Cp) [6/1] cg x1
RbM x 64

Attack Escorts Isabelle (BG+2) , Catherine (BG+1) ES / 12HS
[2] S S S A Hs Mgs Ya Ra Qa (Cp) {6/1]
RbM x 34


Nemotian Forces
Commander of Fleets (LG+1)

Qv x2 on surface of Titan

Assault Vessel 3 (BG) CL / 45HS
[2] S S S S S S A Mgs Hs Qa Qa (cp Cp) Da Mg Da Pta Pta (Cp) Qa Pta Ya (Cp Cp) Pta [6/1] cg x1
PtaM x49

Combat Vessels 6 (BG-2) , 7 (BG-2) DD / 30HS
[2] S S S S S A A H Qa (Cp) Mg Da Qa (Cp) Pta Ya (Cp) Pta [6/1] cg x1
PtaM x29


US Forces

Qv x 9 on surface of Titan


Setup
Saturn and moons as Battle of Titan's Orbitals above
Chinese FGs at 2tH from Titan, speed1.
Zhuang landed on moon beyond battle but available afterward for repairs if Nemotians disengage.
Nemotians start at 60tH from Saturn on radian 5, speed 6.
Pan Euro starts at 196tH from Saturn on radian 8, speed 0.

Special rules.
Pan Euro units may not move until 3rd turn on battle.

Comments.
This battle didn't turn out like anyone had expected. The Nemotian destroyers were in much worse shape than I had anticipated (partly due to the players skillful handling of the terrain, partly due to me underestimating how much impact the Poor crew grade would have on the Da), while the Chinese lost all their ships and most of their population. The Euro managed to only lose one escort and the damage to the Jane Grey was light and all ended up being successfully repaired by emergency repairs.

It is easier to track the Pan Euro ships by simply finding out how many turns it will take them to get on the map and then just waiting until that point. In reality, the middle boy did not know that he would get any assistance until shortly before the 3rd BG arrived. She got the civilian broadcasts from Titan, but sent none until she was nearly close enough to be picked up on sensors.


That wraps up February 2205.

Now for the real chore. If Feb turned out this long, March is going to take a loooonnnggg time to get through.
...and I will show you fear in a handful of dust....

Cralis wrote:I would point out that the "what was" which is different from "here and now" can easily change in the "future then."
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